Avignon Gourmet Tours

Vive la Fraise !

Because we are in the middle of Spring and the sun is shining, this week’s post is dedicated to our beloved Provence Strawberry

It can be seen in countless recipes, cookbooks, magazines or tv adds, everybody loves it, and we do too !

Strawberries grew wild in South America and Asia before it was brought to Europe. Here in Provence, we grow strawberries since the XIXth century, and the main production is located in the “Comtat”, around Carpentras.

The colourful fruit starts to appear on the market stalls at the begining of march is available until mid-june. The different varieties offer unique sensations, small and sweet for the Gariguette or big and juicy for the Cléry, try them all !

In our region, Strawberry is such a big thing that special “fairs” are organized to celebrate it. It’s a great idea for a day out, where you can sample fruits produced by small local farms, in a fun and family atmosphere. There’s usually a market, tasting stalls, music or other events going on.

If you have missed “La fête de la Fraise ” in Carpentras, then head to the small town of Velleron on Thursday May 8th. “La Fraise” will be the very special guest of this unique fair. A second hand market is also organized. Food & Antiques, sounds like a perfect day to me !

If this has opened your appetite, then here’s one simple strawberry recipe that will be a delight for breakfast, poured over natural yogurt :

Jamie’s Strawberry Compote* :

– 400g of “Carpentras” Strawberries
– 2/3 heaped tablespoons of golden caster sugar
– Juice of 1 lemon
– 1 sprig of mint

 

Put the fruit into a pan on a medium heat. Add the sugar, lemon and chopped mint then simmer for about 5mins, until the fruit is lightly cooked but still holding its shape. Leave to cool before serving.

*Taken from Jamie’s Great Britain. Of course “Carpentras” strawberries were not in the original recipe, but since we’re in Provence, we must remember to buy local !

Photo Association Manger Santé

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